Sep 02, 2012 - SOCCER, SEPTEMBER 2nd, 2012......A DAY I WILL NEVER FORGET

What started out to be a miserable day weather wise became the BEST day I have had in 9 months and 7 days.  I really didn’t know what to expect, except possibly snow!

The only information we had was Jaime Smith was trying to organize a soccer tournament for Bradley.  Not an easy thing to do.  It’s hard to pin people down on long weekends, especially the last long weekend of the summer.  It’s nothing to do with caring, it’s just that long weekends are precious, plans are made.  There is fun to be had.  No different than my son Bradley on long weekends -very busy.

At 10:00 A.M. the first team arrived.  Ryan Dejong and Jessica Dargais.  They put together a team of boys and girls from Brad’s soccer days, high school days, and party days. Just to see all their faces on a soccer field again was something, something so special to me.  Just to see them all together like that on that field on such a cold wet day.  For Brad, for me, for our family, I never imagined I would ever see that again, so many years of soccer, same faces.  The faces from Brad’s team, same team all those years.  The girls, from Aimee’s soccer days.  The faces of all the friends that Bradley grew up with.  All are young men and women now.  After talking with them, and asking them to go easy on us seniors, I remember asking them to play like they had the worst hangovers ever!  I said Brad would appreciate that.  They assured me they would.  I just wanted us to have a fighting chance!  It was later that morning I found out they really were super hungover.  Some were really hungover!  Perfect..Brad would have totally appreciated that, that is for sure, he would have loved it!

 “Holy Moly what a Goalie” Nathan Hauser, where were you all those years?  Were you playing professional goalie somewhere other than Beaumont?  I never knew you were so good.  Could have used you all those years. Now Jeff Smith thought he was 16 years old!  We all do at times, but he executed it also.  Flying across that net, awesome save after awesome save.  Jeff kept us decent.  We had 3-4 guys with wheels and I think I was decoration.  We really had fun.  Lyndon Mitchell kept us in stitches the whole day.  I understand now why Nick is such a kind, funny, nice guy.  He must get a lot of that from his Dad.  Melanie Verger, our Ref.  Melanie grew up with Brad and our Brad always had to be careful when it came to soccer concerning Mel.  Mel could kick his butt if she was in the mood.  They were quite a pair.  Took their soccer very serious.  Mel ref’d for this game.  Later I found out she couldn’t find her real whistle, its been a while, so she had a crackerjack box whistle. A toy one! Brad would have howled over that.

The second game, Ryan and Jessica’s team played again.  They played the “182’s”  Marriya Jenkins and Courtney Robinson put this team together.  This team was a complete surprise to us.  “182” is for Blink 182, one of Brad’s favorite bands.  When they all came on the field, right there I could have just lost it!  Those girls put together a team of schoolmates of Brad’s and friends of theirs from all over.  This team was amazing and ready to play hard.  Just like Brad.  They melted my heart.  I was not cold anymore, they just “warmed” me.  What a gesture, some didn’t even know Brad I think.  I was overwhelmed with them.  Oh and they were good, I think Brad somehow helped us out, because we didn’t have to play them. 

Our second game was against Jaime Smith’s team.  Another mixed team of Brad and Kole’s classmates and friends.  Now this team I think went easy on us.  We had a ton of laughs with them, they were very entertaining.  We had Jeff Smith is our net and they had Jaime Smith as their goalkeeper.  Watching the Smith’s battle it out was exciting.  Mama Dawn was very proud.  Proud of her daughter’s goal tending, proud of her daughter Jaime’s accomplishments on this Sunday!  I also believe she was shocked at Jeff’s incredible play, so competitive, just like Brad.  Each and every player was competitive, I don’t know how they will pick who to give an award to in Brad’s honor.  That’s a tough one.

The seniors….Butt Kickin’ Tragically Hip and Knees..we were a mish-mash of friends and neighbors, citizens of Beaumont.  Us ladies had a blast out there.  The guys actually would pass us the ball.  Did they expect us to do something amazing with it, I sure hope not!  It was so much fun.  We mostly were the defense and we would try to hold them off till the guys with wheels could get back.  I thank you all for this from the bottom of my heart.

Hearing the chant “go hip and knees” from the sidelines.  Those folks stayed all day cheering us.  They were freezing at times.  Those folks are our neighbors and friends, they are rocks, they hold me up, they walk beside me thick or thin, good or bad.  I love them all.

Brad’s grandparents (always enjoyed watching Brad play) his uncle and my aunt and uncle made it out for our last game.  Both teams were barely moving, us because we are old and the other team because they played something like 3 games in a row!!  These teams played from 10:00 A.M. till 5:00 P.M.  Amazing group of young people.

Jaime Smith took on this task of organizing this day for Brad. I know it was a tough job.  Thanks to Jaime I truly had a “good” day.  Just even to say those words is foreign to me.  Amazing gift she gave to our family.  Thank you Jaime.  Brad was watching through the clouds, I could feel it!  We will play again someday in Bradley’s memory, maybe just one good old fashioned soccer game with all Brad’s friends and us old timers mixed.  We will play and we will laugh and we will remember.  Just like we know Bradley would like us to do.

Thank you to all who helped make this day perfect.


TEAM 182's Ryan and Jessica's Team and the Senior Team 
Riley Peck showing us some moves! Nathan Hauser in goal for Ryan and Jessica's Team
Two very cold FANS!  Dawn and Janet Ryan and Jessica, Love the matching pink apparel!


Last updated on: 2016-01-09 | Link to this post